National Recognition Boosts Downtown Businesses

By: Garrett Wymer Email
By: Garrett Wymer Email

STAUNTON, Va. -- Beverley Street's sidewalks were full of shoppers on Friday, proof of the beautiful summer weather and the street's recent national recognition.

USA Today named Staunton on its list of 10 "Idyllic and Historic Main Streets" across the country.

Downtown business owners say the city's growing national attention helps their shops do the same.

"There's a lot of people working toward this goal of putting Staunton on the map," said Julie Markowitz, the executive director of the Staunton Downtown Development Association.

USA Today points to the city's architecture, independent shops and local restaurants as signs of Staunton's charm.

Kristi Gorny owns Design at Nine on Beverley Street and Tease Hair Design on Frederick Street. National recognition for the city, she said, is always a dream come true.

"It's good for all of us. All of that is benefiting all of us downtown," Gorny said. "A small business would never be able to afford having that type of exposure. So to get that is really great."

The attention comes from the hard work of everybody downtown, Markowitz said. That includes the city's tourism department spreading the word.

"It's always exciting to see that all of those efforts have culminated in the recognition we're getting right now," she said.

Business owners stress that they depend on locals to keep their businesses running. But national attention builds foot traffic downtown - and that is something they welcome with open doors.


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